Author: Alexandria Bellefleur
With nods to Bridget Jones and Pride and Prejudice, a charming #ownvoices queer rom-com debut about a free-spirited social media astrologer who agrees to fake a relationship with an uptight actuary until New Year’s Eve—with results not even the stars could predict!
After a disastrous blind date, Darcy Lowell is desperate to stop her well-meaning brother from playing matchmaker ever again. Love—and the inevitable heartbreak—is the last thing she wants. So she fibs and says her latest set up was a success. Darcy doesn’t expect her lie to bite her in the ass.
Elle Jones, one of the astrologers behind the popular Twitter account, Oh My Stars, dreams of finding her soul mate. But she knows it is most assuredly not Darcy… a no-nonsense stick-in-the-mud, who is way too analytical, punctual, and skeptical for someone as free-spirited as Elle. When Darcy’s brother—and Elle’s new business partner—expresses how happy he is that they hit it off, Elle is baffled. Was Darcy on the same date? Because… awkward.
When Darcy begs Elle to play along, she agrees to pretend they’re dating to save face. But with a few conditions: Darcy must help Elle navigate her own overbearing family over the holidays and their arrangement expires on New Year’s Eve. The last thing they expect is to develop real feelings during a fake relationship.
But maybe opposites can attract when true love is written in the stars?
Written in the Stars is a very cute novel featuring an opposites attract fake-dating love story. Although it is not a direct retelling, there is a lot of inspiration to Pride and Prejudice. This includes an excellent nod to an amazing Pride moment with one of the characters, who also happens to be named Darcy, doing the Mr. Darcy hand flex after touching their love interest. Although this is a fun romance story, there are still deeper themes including, family acceptance, prejudice, and misogyny. There are some standard romance formulas used in this story, but the author managed to create a unique take that was well-written and enjoyable.
Elizabeth “Elle” is a very outgoing astrologer. She co-owns the brand “Oh My Stars” that does everything from chart readings to creating memes and other content with Margot, her best friend and roommate. After a past break-up, she is on the continued search to find her soul mate. Her new business partner, Brandon, who owns the matchmaking-dating app, OTP, where her company and Brandon’s will collaborate on new features and content. Brandon knows the perfect person to set Elle up with as his sister, Darcy, has moved to the city 6 months ago and he believes the two of them will hit it off.
Darcy is a more reserved actuary who is studying for exams to help her move up in her career. After breaking up with her last girlfriend on the east coast, Darcy decided it was time for a change so she moved to Seattle to start fresh. Due to her past heartbreak, Darcy is not ready to have another relationship and put herself out there only to be hurt again. When Brendan offers the blind date with Elle, Darcy agrees just to give it a chance and to get her brother off her back. When the blind date takes place and does not go well, Darcy thinks she is in the clear with set-ups; however, her brother has other plans. He insists on continuing to take Darcy on set-ups or dating events, so Darcy fibs and says that she and Elle hit it off and are starting a relationship. Hence, the fake dating trope begins with many antics and possible real feelings forming.
The two characters had excellent chemistry together as one is more reserved and logical and the other is more outgoing and creative. It is a yin-yang situation with characters and it worked well. I wish the fake dating parts were played up a little more as it seemed that the two of them did not have to put on a huge show to “prove” that they were together. It just felt like a missed opportunity to have these characters interact more pretending to be a couple. Elle and Darcy are very fun characters, so I would have loved more of having them “pretend” to be a couple before the reader dives into them explore the potential for me. The two characters do get to know each other a lot, as they talk, text, and spend time together, which were all very sweet. The main crux in their potential to move into more is Darcy’s reluctance to want a new relationship with a little bit of them being opposites, which did get a little repetitive at times, but it did not take away from my enjoyment of the story.
Overall, the initial meeting of the two main characters was amazing and I loved the two of them getting to know the other. They shared fantastic times together and I loved the chemistry between them. The ending of this story is a little rushed, but it at least made sense in the story. I have read some novels where the ending comes out of nowhere, but this one at least fit the characters and story. I just wish that it were longer to give it the attention it deserved after a lot of build up to get to know the characters. I loved getting to know Darcy’s brother Brandon in this novel and I cannot wait for him to be the main character in the next novel, Hang the Moon, where his love interest is Darcy’s best friend, Annie, who is featured briefly in this novel!